There are lots of advantages to remote working for both businesses and employees. Opting for a remote working setup can save a business money, enable them to access skills that would otherwise be out of their price range, and also provide a more flexible working environment for their workers.
However, in order for remote working to be effective, you need to properly manage your team. Managing a remote working team requires a different approach to managing workers within an office or other physical workplaces. If you do it right, remote working can be a real boon to your entire business. However, if you get it wrong, then remote working can end up being more of a hindrance.
The following tips can help any business to successfully manage their remote working teams and ensure that they are getting maximum performance at all times.
Tracking your team's performance is a no-brainer, and this is by far the easiest way of making sure that your team is on target and heading in the right direction. There are a number of different ways that you can go about this, but many remote working systems will have performance and metric tracking tools built-in. However, in some cases you may need to set up your own custom performance trackers, especially if the work that your remote workers are doing is particularly specialized.
The main thing here is that you always have a solid grasp of where your team is, where they are going, and whether you are happy with the direction that they are taking.
In any business setup, communication is key. Just because your remote workers aren't in the same building as you, that doesn't mean that you shouldn't be able to communicate with them just as you would the rest of your staff. Regular communications with your team will make it easy for you to give instructions and for them to give feedback.
VoIP technology has made it easy for businesses to talk to workers, even if they are many thousands of miles away. The range of voice software available to businesses with remote workers is truly endless. Take some time to investigate the various options available, like this hosted PBX that shifts your phone and communications infrastructure over to a trusted VoIP provider, and find the one that works best for your setup.
Just because you aren’t there in person to monitor the work of your remote workers, that doesn’t mean that you can’t or shouldn’t try to direct their work processes. By providing just a little bit of guidance to your workers and arming them with the tools that they need to work more efficiently, you can dramatically improve efficiency without having to even leave your office.
For example, many workers and managers find that Gantt charts help them to stay on top of what they need to do, meet deadlines, and produce work on time and on spec. You will find plenty of pre-made Gantt charts online, otherwise, you can easily set one up using Excel.
Whichever techniques you find most effective for workers within your office, you should aim to share them with your remote workers so that they can benefit similarly.
With the right approach, managing a remote working team doesn't have to be any more difficult than managing your regular staff. Remote workers do require a different approach, but the benefits of enabling remote working more than outweigh any additional work on your part. Whether remote working is right for your business or not really comes down to whether or not you trust your staff to work independently and without your guidance. As long as you are satisfied that your team is up to the task, remote working could completely transform your business for the better.